Meckel's diverticulum is an outpouching or bulge in the lower part of the small intestine. The bulge is congenital (present at birth) and is a leftover of the umbilical cord. Meckel's diverticulum is the most common congenital defect of the gastrointestinal tract. It occurs in about 2-3 percent of the general population. It occurs in a fetus early in the pregnancy. Normally, the vitelline duct, which connects the growing fetus with the yolk sac, is absorbed into the fetus by the seventh week of the pregnancy. When the vitelline duct is not fully absorbed, a Meckel's diverticulum develops.
HOW IS MECKEL'S DIVERTICULUM DIAGNOSED?
Blood tests will help a general physician to diagnose the condition. A stool smear and technetium scan will be needed for definitive diagnosis.
HOW IS MECKEL'S DIVERTICULUM TREATED?
People who have Meckel’s diverticulum but do not have any symptoms will not require treatment. Those who experience symptoms due to the condition may need to have surgery to have the diverticulum removed. Surgery typically includes removal of the diverticulum and repair of the intestines. This can be done either through open abdominal surgery or laparoscopically (a narrow tube with a camera is inserted through a small incision, and the Meckel's diverticulum is repaired through another small incision).
DID YOU KNOW?
Long-term outlook for people treated for Meckel'S Diverticulum is good